FROM THE HEART 3to17 April

St Patrick's Day should get you in the mood for a hooley, but the best is yet to come. Book now for the Barbican's Irish festival

When Donal Lunny vows that he's going to "make people dance" at the From the Heart festival, he's likely to succeed. One of Ireland's most innovative musicians and respected producers (he has been dubbed "the Quincy Jones of Irish music", but wonders whether Quincy Jones would ever have heard of him) - his influence is evident from last year's Common Ground album. One of the best of the recent "Celtic" compilations, Lunny bagged his wish-list - stars such as Bono, Elvis Costello and Kate Bush - to rework traditional songs. None of his big-name fans refused his invitation to join the Barbican programme either, which Lunny rightly calls "one of the biggest celebrations of Irish music and arts outside Ireland". The ex-Planxty member and his new Wheels of the World band - joined by Hothouse Flower, Liam O' Maonlai - will open the festival with Lunny's beloved "Irish music with a big motor"

(4 Apr, 7.30pm). He also

appears with Sinead O'Connor the following weekend, but it doesn't stop there. Lunny is promising lots more special guests during the festival; bearing in mind his place at the centre of the current fusion of Irish traditional music with contemporary, global styles, you can take him at his word.


Irish music is featured in the Green on the Screen season, which features Van Morrison in Ireland, the 1980 music-doc of the legend by Il Postino director Michael Radford. 6 Apr


The Irish film industry is booming, and recent years have seen the work of more and more home-grown talent, and varied visions of contemporary Irish life, reaching a wider audience. The Green on the Screen film festival features the best of the old - Man of Aran, Mise Eire - and the most exciting of the new, such as the opening gala film, Last of the High Kings, starring Gabriel Byrne (3 Apr 7.30pm); Cathal Black's acclaimed film of John McGahern's Korea; Trojan Eddie (far left) starring Richard Harris and Stephen Rea (17 Apr 8.45pm); mini-season tributes to Neil Jordan, Jim Sheridan and Roddy Doyle; and previews of Gold in the Streets (5 Apr 6.45pm), and Snakes and Ladders, with Sean Hughes (12 Apr 6.15pm).


If you want to do your jigging and reeling in wide open spaces, the Barbican foyer and Guinness bar will be home to free, nightly sessions by some of the most talented, and boisterous, Irish musicians on the circuit. Among them will be the hotly-tipped Four Men and a Dog (below), didgeridoo/squeeze box duo Stephen Cooney and Seamus Begley, traditionalists Tamalin, harmonica player Brendan Power, and singer-songwriter John Spillane. You may want to bring some supplies: it could be a while before you find your way back home.


The recent Woman's Heart compilations illustrated the range and depth of Ireland's female talent, and some of the best will be enchanting audiences in April. Sinead O'Connor - backed by Donal Lunny and special guests - and the versatile Mary Black, need little introduction, but a wonderful showcase features a raft of young, exciting talent: the irrepressible, Cajun and reggae-influenced accordion-playing of Sharon Shannon, the fragile folk of Sinead Lohan (right) and the perfect pop of 19-year-old starlet Naimee Coleman. Mary Black 6 Apr 7.30pm pounds 10-17.50; Sharon Shannon, Sinead Lohan, Naimee Coleman, 11 Apr 7.30pm pounds 8-14; Sinead O'Connor 12 Apr 7.30pm pounds 10.50-20.


The visual arts strand of the festival includes the silverware of Cara Murphy (below left), part of the Barbican's Metalanguage series, and the interactive artistry of Maurice O'Connell, who'll be putting his energies into discovering and explaining what the Barbican, and the general notion of cultural centres, is all about in the fifth of the Cell series of commissions. Metalanguage: Cara Murphy, today to 13 Apr; Cell 5: Maurice O'Connell, from 26 Mar to 13 Apr


Northern Irish singer-songwriter Paul Brady (above) has collaborated with Mark Knopfler and Mary Chapin Carpenter, has had songs covered by Tina Turner and Bonnie Raitt, and frequently receives accolades from the likes of Eric Clapton and Bob Dylan. A "musicians' musician", he tours infrequently, so the Barbican offers the best chance to experience his unique blend of folk, country, R'n'B and pop without getting muddy at the Cambridge or Glastonbury festivals. With their blend of tradition and contem-porary sounds, Altan provide the rollicking and reeling support. Paul Brady & Altan, 5 Apr 7.30pm, pounds 8-14


The festival also includes weekend workshops exploring the musical interactions between Ireland and the emigrant communities here and in America, and Irish storytelling and puppetry for children. Chamber group Concorde will put the work of Ireland's poets to music at St Giles', Cripplegate (7 Apr 7.30pm pounds 7.50/pounds 5 concs) and John Cage performs his Roaratorio: An Irish Circus on Finnegan's Wake (St Giles' 11 Apr 6.30pm pounds 5/pounds 4 concs). Composer Michel Silleabhin and the Irish Chamber Orchestra perform his new score for the 1925 film Irish Destiny (12 Apr 12 2.30pm), and later perform more of his work at St Giles' (12 Apr 6.30pm pounds 10/pounds 8 concs)


If pints of the black stuff, available at the late-opening Guinness bar, are not akin to meals in themselves, top Irish chef Richard Corrigan will be rustling up Irish-themed gala menus at the weekends, and equally scrumptious menu du jour during the festival. Searcy's Restaurant (bookings: 0171-588 3008), gala nights 4, 5, 11 and

12 Apr

newsAnother week, another dress controversy on the internet
Life and Style
Scientist have developed a test which predicts whether you'll live for another ten years
Dave Mackay lifts the FA Cup in 1967 having skippered Spurs to victory
Life and Style
Marie had fake ID, in the name of Johanna Koch, after she evaded capture by the Nazis in wartime Berlin
historyOne woman's secret life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Ashdown Group: Client Services Executive - Enfield, North London

    Negotiable: Ashdown Group: Client Services Executive - Enfield, North London ...

    Recruitment Genius: Telesales & Customer Service Executive - Call Centre Jobs

    £7 - £9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: Are you outgoing? Do you want to work in...

    Ashdown Group: Finance Manager - Covent Garden, central London - £45k - £55k

    £45000 - £55000 per annum + 30 days holiday: Ashdown Group: Finance Manager - ...

    Ashdown Group: Systems Administrator - Lancashire - £30,000

    £28000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: 3rd Line Support Engineer / Network ...

    Day In a Page

    Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

    Climate change key in Syrian conflict

    And it will trigger more war in future
    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
    Is this the way to get young people to vote?

    Getting young people to vote

    From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
    Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

    Poldark star Heida Reed

    'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
    Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

    Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

    Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
    Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
    With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

    Money, corruption and drugs

    The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
    America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

    150 years after it was outlawed...

    ... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
    Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

    You won't believe your eyes

    Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
    Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
    War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn